County athletes prepare for boys’ track and field competition
HANCOCK COUNTY – The location is different this year, but the goal remains the same as student-athletes from across Indiana converge on West Indianapolis on Friday for the 2021 IHSAA Boys’ Track and Field Finals.
The annual get-together, typically held on the Indiana University Bloomington campus, this year will be held at Ben Davis High School for boys on Friday and girls on Saturday.
This Friday, Mt. Vernon Marauders, New Palestine Dragons and Greenfield-Central Cougars will be represented at the state meet, which opens at 3 p.m. with pole vault, long jump and discus throwing competitions.
The running events of the competition will start at 4:15 p.m. with the 4 × 800 meter relay and will end with the last race of the evening scheduled for 8:30 p.m. when the 4 × 400 relay is underway.
Admission for the state finals is $ 12 per person with children 2 and under admitted free. All tickets are digital.
Looking ahead to the state competition, here are this year’s state men’s track and field finalists, led by Hancock County, the Hoosier Heritage Conference and section champion Mt. Marauders from Vernon.
Mount. Vernon 4 × 800 meter relay
Part of the reason why Mt. Vernon won the 2021 section tag team title and finished third at Lawrence Central Regional was behind the strength of his stints.
The Marauders 4 × 800 quartet was obviously no exception, as senior Colin Brown, second student Daylon King, senior Evan Rappe and junior Joseph Blagrave kicked off last week’s regional meet with a third place finish. to Lawrence Central in 8: 16.13.
At Mt. Vernon Sectional, the quartet finished second behind Lawrence North with a time of 8: 24.30. LN won with an 8: 18.65.
The team won the Hancock County Relay Championship in early May with a time of 8: 54.85, and they reached first place a week later in the Hoosier Heritage Conference meet with an 8: 28.38 .
As at state, they are ranked last in 27th overall, but they continue to cut time as the playoffs continue, which bodes well for the team.
Derrick marble, Mount. Vernon
Mount. The Vernon sophomore continues to find his rhythm since the Hancock County Track and Field Championships in early May.
State qualifier in the 100-meter, Derrick “DJ” Marble was third in the county on May 6 with a time of 11.42.
He shaved nearly two-tenths of a second a week later at the event at the Hoosier Heritage Conference Championships to take the top spot overall in 11.24, and he continued to place in the top three for the rest of the way in his first college season.
During Mt. Vernon Sectional On May 20, Marble used his similar home track at the county and at the conference where the two meetings were held.
He finished first in the section with a final time of 11.37 after finishing second in 11.56 in the preliminaries.
At Lawrence Central Regional, Marble clocked his best “championship game” time of 11.15 for second behind Jasiah Rogers of Park Tudor (10.84).
Marble enters the state meet, ranked 21st overall, with Lake Central second student Kameron Gethers first at 10.77.
Joseph Bowsher, Mt. Vernon
Mount. Vernon Sr. was slightly overshadowed last month by his teammate and full-fledged talented hurdler sophomore George Burhenn, but he was in the game.
State qualified in the 300-meter-tall hurdles, Bowsher kept pace while Burhenn doubled as Hancock County and Hoosier Heritage Conference champion in the 110 and 300 hurdles.
In County, Bowsher did not compete, but did emerge in the HHC competition.
During the conference meet, the senior marauder tied Burhenn in the 300 with a time of 40.99, but settled for second place via tie-breaking criteria.
At Mt. Vernon Sectional, the tide turned as Bowsher improved with a time of 40.78 for first place on May 20. Burhenn was second at 41.34.
Bowsher punched his individual ticket to the state meet with a second place finish at Lawrence Central Regional with a time of 40.45 in the 300 hurdles.
For the state competition, he is ranked 19th overall while Lawrence Central senior Paul Goins, who finished first in the regional, is ranked ninth at 39.80.
Mount. Relais Vernon 4 × 400 meters
Similar to the Marauders 4 × 800 relay team, the 4 × 400 proved to be a hot spot for team points last month.
First-year foursome Andres Langston, second-year Cameron Parsley, first-year Welbert Jones and second-year George Burhenn won the Hancock County Championship title in 3: 31.80 en route to the Marauders tag team title.
The Marauders 4 × 400 relay team repeated the feat during the HHC encounter to help secure Mt. Vernon’s eventual tag team championship with a winning race in 3: 31.70.
During the section, the team was mixed with Jones, Langston, Andrew Jones Sr. and Joseph Bowsher Sr. sent into the starting blocks, which led to another first place in 3: 28.70.
During the Lawrence Central Regional, the revamped team rose to the challenge and posted a time of 3: 25.51 to win the event in a photo finish over host Bears by three hundredths of a second (3 : 25.54).
Statewide, the new group is ranked fifth just behind Chesterton (3: 25.27), Lake Central (3: 23.59), Bloomington North (3: 21.95) and Carmel (3: 21.79).
Kirk Knecht, Greenfield-Central
A multisport athlete this spring, dividing his time between baseball and track and field, Greenfield-Central rookie Kirk Knecht made a name for himself in the latter fairly quickly.
Knecht placed third in the long jump at 21 feet, 9.50 inches to secure a state spot at Warren Central Regional last week.
Knecht recorded top-three standings in the long jump at every stoppage of the playoffs, including in the sectional where the newcomer was second at 21-10.50.
In the Hoosier Heritage Conference meet, he was second with a steal of 20-08.50. At the Hancock County Championships, Knecht won the event with a distance of 20-08.50.
Knecht recorded an individual county winning trifecta this season winning the long jump, 100 meters (11.30) and 200 in 22.76.
Knecht was named the athlete of the Hancock County Championships competition. He was also section champion in the 200 at Warren Central in 22.72 before placing fifth at Warren Central Regional in 22.81.
For state, Knecht is the 18th seed and is just one of two freshmen in the top 20 with Pike’s Christian Peterson in fifth (8/22/25).
Richard Clevenger, New Palestine
One of the most competitive events of the past month with players like Andrew Harvey, senior of Pendleton Heights, and others posting distances that would have challenged the 2019 State title in the discus throw, Richard Clevenger, senior of New Palestine, has not been too far from the rhythm. .
Going to state via a recall, the multisport athlete placed fifth at Warren Central Regional with a distance of 153-01.00.
Warren Central senior Keon Perkin-Sullivan won the regional event with a throw of 180-06. East Central junior Leo Maxwell was second at 173-10, Columbus North junior Tucker Smith was third at 165-10 and Franklin Central junior Alex Evans was fourth at 163-01.
At Warren Central Sectional, Clevenger placed fourth at 153-06.00 and advanced with a recall.
He was the Hancock County Champion at Mt. Vernon High School on May 6 with a distance of 143-07.
During the Hoosier Heritage Conference, also at Mt. Vernon, Clevenger was fourth with 146-05.00. Harvey won the event with a 182-09, followed by Walker Moore (156-10) of Yorktown and Evan Conley (153-00) of Delta.
Clevenger, also qualified in wrestling state in his career, is currently ranked 20th overall for the next state meet.
He was named the 2021 Palestinian New Male Athlete of the Year as a soccer player, wrestler and pitcher.
His sectional throw this season puts him fourth in the school’s all-time record standings.
Cody Hargett, Greenfield-Central
Persistence and patience define Cody Hargett, senior at Greenfield-Central, who has waited and worked his way to a place in the state finals in his first career since failing in the jump competition to the regional pole in 2019.
Section champion in sophomore year in 2019, Hargett was preferred to compete at Warren Central Regional, but he did not rise and then lost an opportunity in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
During the Warren Central Regional 2021, the two-time sectional champion of the Cougars finally broke through.
Hargett, who remains undefeated this season, climbed 14.66 inches to clinch his first-career regional title and a trip to the state final.
At the Warren Central Sectional the week before, Hargett finished first with a height of 14-04. He was a finalist in the first year at 12-06 during the sectional in 2018.
Hargett is the school’s pole vault record holder at 14-08 (set earlier this season).
Currently, he is ranked fifth in the state event as one of the top four senior citizens.
Hargett won the Hancock County title at 14-03 and won the HHC Championship at 14-00.
Keagan La Belle, Mt. Vernon
Known for his deadly force on the soccer field for Mt. Vernon Marauders, Junior Keagan La Belle is as graceful as he is athletic in the pole vault competition.
A runner-up behind Cody Hargett of Greenfield-Central in this season’s Hoosier Heritage Conference meet at 12-06, La Belle also won Hancock County Championship honors with a height of 13-00.
In the sectional, La Belle clinched the pole vault title at 11-06 and carried a header height of 13-06.
During the Lawrence Central Regional, he beat his original size with a winning jump of 13-08 to knock down Lawrence Central senior Tivon Wiley at 13-04.
La Belle is ranked 15th overall for the state competition as one of four juniors in the top 15 and one of four competitors at 13-08.